Friday, February 26, 2010

Racked the Fat Tire Clone, and bottled the Belgian Wit Today

I racked the Fat Tire clone to the secondary today. The FG was 1.013. It smells really good, and I tasted the hydrometer sample. It’s really good and I can’t wait until it’s carbonated. It will definitely be a staple brew around here.

I also bottled the Belgian Witbier today. It looks pretty good. The color was a little bit darker than I anticipated, but I think it was because I did a full 60 minute boil on the extract portion of the wort. I spoke with the owner of Brewstock today, and he said that while it may have affected the color, it should not affect the flavor. Time will tell.

Sanitizing bottles sucks! I really want to start kegging, I’m just trying figure out when.


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Fat Tire Clone

I brewed the Fat Tire clone yesterday afternoon, and I think it’s going to be awesome. I did it as a partial mash and it smells similar to the dead guy clone I did a few weeks ago. When I racked it into the primary, it smelled bready, malty, and well…just friggin awesome. The OG was 1.058, not bad for the test run on the mash tun. It is in the spare bedroom in bubbling away in the primary. I pitched the pacman yeast leftover from the dead guy ale.

I'll put it into the secondary in a week and a half.


Monday, February 15, 2010

Racking day, bottling day, and brewing day

Belgian Witbier
I transferred the Belgian Witbier to the secondary today, and it looks pretty good. Final gravity was 1.007, putting the alcohol by volume at 4.7% which is a little low, but I think it’ll be fine. The color is nice, and smell rolling off was very nice. It was spicy, orange, and bready all at the same time. It should be a really nice brew. Just right for springtime by the pool.

Irish Stout Extract batch
I also bottled the Irish Stout extract batch, and I have to say, “wow! That stuff smells good…I even tasted a little bit of the flat product. It was really good! It’s malty, bitter, with a touch of yeast character. I can’t wait to taste it once it’s carbonated.

Fat Tire – Partial Mash
I’m currently mashing the Fat Tire clone I put together from an extract recipe that a friend gave me. I just took the extract recipe to Aaron at Brewstock New Orleans, and he helped me put together the batch. I’ll post the recipe in a little over a month, when I taste the finished product. This is my trial run on the new mash tun, and low and behold, I’ve got a leak. It’s leaking about 7-8 drops per minute, which isn’t bad really; it’s just annoying. Its sitting at 156°F.  I’ll be doing the vorlauf step and a batch sparge in about 20 minutes.  Wish me luck!


Sunday, February 14, 2010

Brown Ale is ready to drink - Delicious

Well the Newcastle Brown Ale clone is ready to drink. It’s been in the bottle three weeks, and it’s pretty good. It’s actually much smoother than the commercial version. I actually would have liked it to be a little bit hoppier. I was impatient and tried it last weekend, but it wasn’t quite ready. It’s absolutely delicious today. Very nice!


Saturday, February 6, 2010

Belgian Witbier - and New Mash Tun

I brewed a Belgian Witbier last night, and I'm hoping that it comes out OK. I had problems maintaining the temperature during the partial mash process. My thermometer broke, and spilled BBs all over the stove – what a night.

When I pitched the yeast into the primary, my OG was 1.044. My efficiency suffered! I inspected the grain after I was done, and there seemed to be lots of sugar left. I base that on the internals of the grain pods – there seemed to be lots of gelatin like grain.

Don't get me wrong, I think the beer will be fine – albeit a little low in alcohol. It smelled just like Hoegaarden.

I still would have preferred a more efficient mash, so I've decided to build a Mash Tun. Even for a partial mash, I should get much better beer and higher starch conversion. I picked up the cooler yesterday for $14. That's pretty cheap. I picked up the remaining parts from Ace Hardware today. Here are some pictures of the finished product.
Here is the mash tun with the valve installed.
Here is the mash tun internal screen.

 I plan on using it for the Fat tire clone next Friday.  Wish me luck!


Friday, February 5, 2010

Bottle Cleaning

Before I bottled the Maibock today, I had the pleasure of cleaning beer bottles. It worked out pretty well though – I used Oxy clean.

I filled a cooler with hot water and put in a couple of scoops of Oxy Clean(dollar store version). Then I filled the bottles with not water (so that they wouldn’t float), and set them in the cooler. In about an hour the labels began to float off. I rinsed them off in the dishwasher, then sanitized them and put them on the drying tree.

I had a few different bottles in the mix. See below:

Sam Adams -  Easy – labels floated off, and almost no glue remained
Rogue Dead Guy Ale - Easy – labels floated off, and almost no glue remained

Bass Ale - Easy – labels floated off, and almost no glue remained
Sierra Nevada Moderate – Labels floated off, but the glue remained and need a little bit of scrubbing

I think I'm going to kegging. 


Bottled the Maibock - ala Dead Guy

I bottled the Maibock today and this stuff is going to be really good. I tasted it side by side with Rogue Dead Guy ale, and the color was just about exact. Mine was a tad bit darker, probably because of the boil time. I tasted it flat, and it was phenomenal! I can’t wait until it’s carbonated. This will be one of my staple beers – it’s just too good not to brew again. I’ll probably do the all grain recipe next time.

So far, it’s a success!

The one on the left is the clone, the one on the right is the Rogue.  I'm guessing I'll get the chill haze when its done conditioning.


Racked the Irish Stout into the Secondary

The Irish stout looked great so I racked it to the secondary today. The FG was 1.013. It has a great color and wonderful aroma. Not bad for a kit! I’ll bottle that bad boy next Friday.